With a collection of hundreds of attractions, it’s vital to know what you want to see. Here we list three highlights to start your itinerary
Regardless of your itinerary, it’s almost certain that one visit won’t be enough to explore Inhotim. Located some 37 miles [60 km] from Belo Horizonte, the open-air museum has around 700 works (selected from a collection of 1,300 pieces) by over 250 artists, from Brazil and abroad, on display at 23 galleries. Not to mention the nature and Botanical Garden there, which contains approximately 5,000 plant species. Enthusiasts can buy tickets for more than one day, but it’s a good idea to check the attractions beforehand.
The voice of the earth
As the integration between art and nature is one of Inhotim’s premises, the Sonic Pavilion by Doug Aitken is an important stop. There you can hear the sounds of the earth – more precisely, from a 663-foot [202 m] deep hole. Microphones installed there amplify and transport the sounds to the closed pavilion. The experience is unique, a symphony that never repeats, the voice of the earth, loud and clear.
A gallery of contrasts
Connecting two levels of the park, the Adriana Varejão Gallery is a great example of integration between art and architecture, one of the museum’s characteristics. Installed in a reinforced concrete building, it’s home to such works as the sculpture Linda do Rosário – a wall that contains entrails and tiles, two recurring themes in the artist’s oeuvre. The relationship between the contemporary building and Varejão’s style, inspired by colonial baroque, is a space contrast.
Far from the other attractions, the woods are home to a battle of divine proportions: in De Lama Lâmina (2009), American artist Matthew Barney uses Umbanda mythology to oppose wood and iron, nature and technology. The installation is located in an iron and glass dome in the middle of the forest. Inside, a skidder is hoisting the sculpture from a trunk. The narrative refers to a conflict between Ogum, the orisha of iron and technology, and Ossanha, the orisha of plants and forests. The result is a portrait of the tension between these forces, progress and preservation, creation and destruction.